Cook’s Notes: Cinnamon-flavored nuts are suitable for fall and winter, and these are a wonderful treat at holiday time. It took a while to find a glazed pecan recipe that didn’t call for egg whites. (Recipes such as Swedish Nuts with whipped egg whites require a stick of butter and oven baking. I wanted a quick, stove-top version with less fat.)

A batch of these sweet pecans makes a nice gift from your kitchen. The Hartford Courant recommends packaging nuts for gifts in Asian take-out containers or decorated jars. Annmarie Timmins, The Associated Press, has an excellent article on kitchen gifts. She says, “Spiced nuts stay fresh for a few weeks, so they can be made well before the holidays.”

2 T butter
2 c raw, unsalted pecan halves

Spice mix:
2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 c honey

Combine the spice mix (cinnamon to nutmeg). In a skillet over medium-low heat, melt 2 T butter. Add pecan halves. Toast for 2 minutes.

Add honey to the skillet, and stir well to combine. Cook over medium-high heat for another 4 minutes until mixture is foamy. Toss toasted pecans with dry spice mix. Stir until well coated.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; lightly coat with cooking spray. Spread pecans on prepared baking sheet, separating with fork, and leave to cool. Sprinkle nuts with additional salt, if desired. Makes 8 servings (1/4 c each).

Variations

This recipe is flexible:

  1. You can substitute 2 T canola oil for the butter.
  2. You can use almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, or walnuts along with or instead of pecans.
  3. You can make a savory version with 4 tsp Faith’s Special Spice Mix instead of the cinnamon mixture.

Sources: This recipe is modified from information and recipes found in many sources, including www.cooks.com (sample recipe with vinegar and a search from Google — the Cooks site has the most frustrating search engine); www.recipezaar.com; Honey-Glazed Pecans in Kraft’s Food & Family, Winter 2005; and Faith Ford, Cooking with Faith.

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